I spend most of my time now harvesting the produce that we have tended to for the past few months (hence the late blog post). I have to be very imaginative to include the fresh fruit and vegetables into our everyday meals, or be organised enough to freeze or preserve them. What would be the point of growing all these goodies for them to go to waste by not being prepared and organised!
After the heat wave of July, we are now in the middle of rainy, dull days ahead for the next few days at least. Just when we need the extra sunshine and heat to help ripen our crops, the weather seems to be taking a turn for the worst. Still, we have to make the most of what we have and adapt to suit the weather. There are still plenty of crops to sow and many more jobs to do.
Jobs to do………in August
- Check sweetcorn kernels to see if they are ripe. Press a thumbnail into the kernels to see if a milky liquid oozes out.
- Pinch out runner bean tops to prevent having to over reach for the beans.
- Lift and store second early potatoes.
- Take cuttings for woody herbs such as rosemary, thyme marjoram and sage.
- Keep on top of pest control. A soft soap liquid solution works well.
- Thin seedlings to prevent overcrowding and water well if the soil is dry after thinning. The transplants may be situated elsewhere to get another crop.
- Keep the greenhouse well ventilated and damp down the floors to help the humidity.
- Harvest and dry a wide variety of fresh herbs to use later in the season.
- Lift and store early beetroot. They taste more tender when harvested before they reach the size of a tennis ball.
- Keep harvesting your vegetables to encourage production. In some cases, the more you pick the more you get!
- Continue to feed tomatoes and peppers but reduce the watering towards the end of the months to help the chillies to ripen.
- Completely remove and turn the contents of the compost bin. There will be plenty of green waste added this month so it pays to turn before it gets overfull.
- Make a new strawberry bed with the runners from the existing plants.
- Keep an eye on courgettes and pick them while they are still young. They seem to grow in the blink of an eye!
- Lift and dry onions, shallots and garlic for use in the coming months.
What to sow………Indoors and outdoors
- Autumn and Winter salads
- Early Carrots
- Chinese Cabbage
- Pak Choi
- Kohl Rabi
- Hardy Lettuce
- Spring Onion
- Japanese Onion
- Spring Cabbage
- Winter radish
What to plant………in August
- Winter Brassicas
- Kohl rabi
- Sprouting broccoli
Crops in season now
- Spring onions
- Broad Beans
- Kohl Rabi